Noura Mint Seymali
Noura Mint Seymali
Compared to neighboring countries like Mali and Senegal, Mauritania is not as well discovered for its traditional music. Therefore, the audience has a unique opportunity to discover this Mauritanian gem: Griot Noura Mint Seymali!
"A living and fully developed style" - THE GUARDIAN
Noura Mint Seymali is one of Mauritania's foremost musical ambassadors, hailing from a long line of griots. As early as age 13, she was a background singer for her famous stepmother, Dimi Mint Abba. Seymali played the harp as a young girl and entertained at weddings. Her father, Seymali Ould Ahmed Vall, developed the first system for Mauritanian melodic notation, making him a pioneering teacher in Mauritanian music. Seymali encouraged Noura's earliest experiments with fusion music. When Noura met one of Mauritania's foremost guitarists, Jeich Ould Chighaly, and became his wife, they decided to modernize and export Mauritanian music worldwide!
"Noura Mint Seymali keeps blues rock very much alive." "West African joy of playing with a contagious effect." - AFTENPOSTEN
The music is a blend of Mauritanian traditional music, desert blues, and reggae, spiced with powerful guitar playing and strong vocals that convey fascinating lyrics. The major newspaper The Guardian has reviewed the last two albums "Tzenni" (2014) and "Arbina" (2016), writing:
"A powerful voice" - THE GUARDIAN
Seymali has collaborated with musicians such as Damon Albarn, Baaba Maal, Tinariwen, Spoek Mathambo, and Oumou Sangare.
Her latest album "Arbina" delves even deeper into Mauritanian roots, reinterpreting tradition in a contemporary context. Many of the songs seek the divine, reaching for grace and protection.
Matthew Lavoie, an ethnomusicologist and music journalist, wrote about "Arbina":
"Mauritanian music does not meet you halfway, as Congolese rumba or Ghanaian highlife does, but instead requires you to take the time to adjust your ears to its subtle modalities and rhythmic pulse."
Noura Mint Seymali – vocals/ardine
Jeiche Ould Chighaly – electric guitar/tidinit
Matthew C. Tinari – drums
Ousmane Touré – bass
The concert is supported by Institut Francais Norvége